Hiring a leader, a key focus as we look at the best predicted final squad for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) for IPL 2022.
The Kolkata Knight Riders had a few surprising but predictable retentions for IPL 2022. While Andre Russell and Venkatesh Iyer were expected to get retained, the retention of Varun Chakravarthy and Sunil Narine was a slight surprise. They could have easily retained a strong opener in the form of Shubman Gill and a pacer in the firm of Lockie Ferguson for that same price.
With 4 retentions already done, and KKR being without a leader, the auction won’t be easy for them. By retaining 4 players, they potentially lost INR 8 Cr as their retention value is INR 34 Cr, but their purse deduction is INR 42 Cr. The team would need to do a lot of work in the batting and pace department as they didn’t retain any batter or pacer.
So, with the kind of options available in the pool, and from the original group of players that played for them in IPL 2021, what could be the perfect squad that Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will want for IPL 2022? Let’s find out in this article. To keep things simple, we shall be exploring the squad in different categories.
Top-order Batters: Chris Lynn, Manish Pandey, & Venkatesh Iyer
Backups: Abhimanyu Easwaran, Robin Uthappa & Wriddhiman Saha
When we talk about IPL 2021, KKR had a young contingent for the top-order position. They had Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, and Venkatesh Iyer in the top-order. But sadly, only Venkatesh Iyer was retained by KKR, and Shubman Gill got retained by Ahmedabad Franchise. KKR may or may not invest again in Nitish Rana and Rahul Tripathi given the below-par returns from them.
For the top-order spot, KKR would be happy to get back Chris Lynn- their original opener before moving to Mumbai Indians. Along with Lynn, KKR can look to get back Manish Pandey and Robin Uthappa, who were the stars behind their 2014 win. KKR would also be happy to get local boys Wriddhiman Saha and Abhimanyu Easwaran.
Main Other Batters: Dinesh Karthik, Andre Russell, Shakib Al Hasan & Shreyas Iyer
Backups: David Miller, Karun Nair & Sunil Narine
Middle-order batting is what KKR would mostly invest upon. The big question for them would be whether to buy Eoin Morgan as their leader once again or invest in a fresh leader. Probably, an Indian captain of the calibre of Gautam Gambhir would do them world good. From the available options, Shreyas Iyer has been a successful leader for Delhi Capitals, and would be a great addition to KKR. He would definitely be on KKR’s target list for IPL 2022.
Apart from Shreyas Iyer, Dinesh Karthik’s experience would do the world good for them. Given that Karthik is at the flag end of his career, Karthik can be bought at a cheap price. In addition, a foreign finisher in the form of David Miller would be excellent. Supporting them would be Shakib Al Hasan, Karun Nair, and of course the best of all, Andre Russell.
Main All-rounders: Andre Russell, Shakib Al Hasan & Venkatesh Iyer
Backup All-rounders: Pat Cummins & Sunil Narine
Talk about All-rounders, and KKR have done a brilliant job by retaining 3 of them in the form of Andre Russell, Venkatesh Iyer, and Sunil Narine. While Russell and Iyer are batting all-rounders, Sunil Narine is a bowling all-rounder. In addition, if KKR get back Shakib Al Hasan and Pat Cummins it would be excellent. Even though KKR may not want to invest more than 10 Cr in these two.
Main Spinners: Varun Chakravarthy, Sunil Narine & Shakib Al Hasan
Backup Spinners: Prayas Ray Barman & Vicky Ostwal
Coming to spinners, KKR once again did a good job by retaining Varun Chakravarthy and Sunil Narine. This probably sorts their spin department, and the addition of Shakib Al Hasan makes it stronger. They would probably want good backups, and Prayas Ray Burman and Vicky Ostwal are superb add ons. While Prayas is a brilliant leg spinner, Ostwal is a brilliant slow left-arm spin bowler as seen in the U19 World Cup 2022.
Main Pacers: Adam Milne, Mohammed Shami, Pat Cummins & Saqib Mahmood
Backup Pacers: Akash Deep, Andre Russell, Shivam Mavi, Venkatesh Iyer & Kamlesh Nagarkoti
Coming to pace bowling, KKR would once again need to invest heavily in this. The IPL 2021 squad had mostly inexperienced Indian pacers and a few good overseas pacers. From the 2021 squad, KKR would be happy to get back Pat Cummins, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, and Shivam Mavi. They can get for others too, but might not want to invest as they could be expensive.
In addition to these three and Andre Russell, KKR can look at England’s Saqib Mahmood and New Zealand’s Adam Milne as solid overseas pacers. From the Indian contingent, Akash Deep can be good support for Kamlesh Nagarkoti and Shivam Mavi. The team also has all-rounders Andre Russell and Venkatesh Iyer as good backup options.
So, that completes the best predicted final squad for KKR for IPL 2022. It won’t be easy for the Kolkata Knight Riders. They have a lot of areas to invest in, but their budget is limited. They can at max invest in 1-2 players with a budget of over 10 Cr. How they do it would be a big question. Hopefully, from the list mentioned above, KKR can get at least 50-60% players.
IPL 2022 – Best Predicted Squad for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR)
Batters: Abhimanyu Easwaran, Chris Lynn, David Miller, Dinesh Karthik, Karun Nair, Manish Pandey, Robin Uthappa, Shreyas Iyer & Wriddhiman Saha
All-rounders: Andre Russell, Pat Cummins, Shakib Al Hasan, Sunil Narine & Venkatesh Iyer
Bowlers: Adam Milne, Akash Deep, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Mohammed Shami, Prayas Ray Barman, Saqib Mahmood, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakravarthy & Vicky Ostwal
Coach: Brendon Mccullum // Captain: Shreyas Iyer
Thanks for reading! What’s your squad for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) for IPL 2022? Please email your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org
Adesh Kothari is the founder of AK4Tsay1 Cricalytics.
Cricket to him is like what ‘Football is to Lionel Messi’, ‘Singing is to Lata Mangeshkar’, ‘Dancing is to Michael Jackson’, and what ‘Acting is to Clint Eastwood’.
Besides his effervescent love for Cricket, Adesh is an MBA by qualification.